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Hi Spence,

Domains and Domain Names are the same thing, one is just a shorter name for the other. A domain is just an address on the internet. Similar to a house address. It has a specific location. The big difference between a house address and the domain address is that you can pick up and move the domain a lot easier than moving a house. :)

Websites are the "building" at the domain address. is a website. To get a website for your domain you need a web hosting provider. There are lots of them out there.

Creating a website such as: requires two steps:
1. Buy the domain from a domain registrar. GoDaddy, DomainInvestigator, and others are domain registrars They allow you to purchase a domain. They give you your address.

2. Buy some web hosting. aka build your house. Many domain registrars also offer hosting. The main point here is that the person you use in step 1 and the person you use in step 2 do not have to be the same. Many people say they shouldn't be the same. That's up to you however.

To answer your second question, I personally use Domain Investigator to register my domain and to host it. I can't comment on GoDaddy.

Does it make sense to have a website? I think they're a great tool. They allow people to find you, they provide a focal point for you and your books, I definately think they're useful. Check out for one of my town's local writers.

If you want a quality looking site you're going to have to pay for it. I say this only because you don't have enough background right now to be building the site. Personally what I did was to pay for a series of templates which I later filled in with text. I make things work, I don't try to make them look nice. :) I know my limitations.

Writing simple HTML (the language used for websites) is not hard. There are many programs and books out there which explain it all in detail. Making something look nice is the hard part.

Maintaining the site is something you could do with a little practice. Add new content, publish some articles online whatever. Place reviews for your book online. There are lots of ways you can maintain and update your site. Try to avoid a stale site that is built once and never changed.

Does that help?

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